The Journal of International
Advanced Otology
Original Article

Effect of Musical Experience on Cochlear Frequency Resolution: An Estimation of PTCs, DLF and SOAEs


Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology, Samvaad Institute of Speech and Hearing, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India


Department of Audiology, Samvaad Institute of Speech and Hearing, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India


Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology, Dr. S.R Chandrashekhar Institute of Speech and Hearing, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

J Int Adv Otol 2021; 17: 313-318
DOI: 10.5152/iao.2021.8477
Read: 966 Downloads: 405 Published: 01 July 2021

BACKGROUND: There is a lot of debate on whether musical experience/training can affect cochlear filter characteristics and thereby enhance frequency resolution skills in musicians (Ms). Thus, the objective of the study was to compare between Ms and non-musicians (NMs) and correlate the frequency resolution skills with years of musical experience, the difference limen for frequency (DLF), and the Q10 values of psychophysical tuning curves (PTCs) measured at 2 characteristic frequencies (CFs), 1000 and 4000 Hz. The secondary objective was to find out whether spontaneous otoacoustic emissions (SOAEs) can be recorded among Ms more frequently than among NMs.

METHODS: Thirty-six listeners with normal hearing participated in the study. They were 18 Ms with a minimum of 8 years of musical experience, and 18 NMs. Forward-masked PTCs and DLF tests were assessed for each listener in the right ear at 2 CFs, 1 and 4 kHz, and SOAEs were measured using standard protocol.

RESULTS: The results obtained indicated that values of the psychophysical measures, DLF and Q10, were better among the Ms group. Statistically significant differences were seen when measurements were done at 1 KHz and 4 KHz. SOAEs were recorded in a higher number of Ms than NMs. Musical experience had a moderate positive correlation with PTC Q10 values at both 1 and 4 kHz, but not DLF values.

CONCLUSION: This study indicates that musical experience enhances peripheral filtering, and thereby betters cochlear frequency selectivity in Ms.

Cite this article as: Kakar K, Prajna Bhat J, Thontadarya S. Effect of musical experience on cochlear frequency resolution: An estimation of PTCs, DLF and SOAEs. J Int Adv Otol. 2021; 17(4): 313-318.

EISSN 2148-3817